CliffNotes21DayCleanse_BleubirdAs promised, I am sharing my cliff notes to the 21-day cleanse I completed last month. The program is actually quite simple and can easily be found with a little Googling. Sticking to it, not as simple, but it can be done, and let me tell you, it has changed my lifestyle in so many amazing ways.

The Breakdown: You are replacing two meals a day with a smoothie. You can buy the Clean Program Powder (I highly recommend using theirs, since it’s full of everything you need to replace a meal). If that’s not an option for you, here are two protein powers that I like from Moon Juice (which is very affordable) and Vega. Both brands have vanilla and chocolate flavors. I personally prefer vanilla because I find it much more versatile. To that you can add anything that is allowed on the program (linked below). I really like to use a few of the Daily Harvest smoothie cups in because it makes the smoothie-making process that much simpler, but note: many of them are not compliant. You can also look for smoothie packs at your local health food store. Just be sure to the read the labels.

You need to take a probiotic each morning with you first smoothie. With all three meals (smoothie, food, smoothie) you need to take 2 enzymes, 1 berberine, and 1 silymarin.

Very important: You need to have at least a 12-hour food-free period, so that your body can clean itself. So, if you have your last smoothie (dinner) at 8pm, you cannot have your next meal until 8am.

Here are the links to the foods you CAN and CANNOT have. This is very strict, so make sure to check your labels and ingredients list while shopping.

I highly recommend buying the Clean Eats book. It’s great and is full of recipes that you can make that are cleanse-compliant. It also has recipes that are great post-cleanse. I also used It’s All Good so much during my 21 days. It’s been out for years, so chances are many of you already have it on your shelves.


  • Do not eat out. I ate out once and it was very difficult. You would be surprised how many things contain cane sugar, honey, and soy.
  • Embrace cooking at home. Try to find joy in cooking healthy, new things.
  • Meal-prep! I reserved (and still do) my Sunday afternoons for the kitchen. It made preparing meals during the week so easy. (I’ll post about my meal-prepping routine, tips, and ideas soon.)
  • Go to the grocery store several times a week for fish, poultry, fruits, and veggies. I don’t recommend buying everything for the week at once. You want your food to be as fresh as possible.
  • Find a recipe or dressing that calls for sugar? Try leaving it out, or if it really needs a bit of sweetness, use coconut sugar. It’s amazing! Just use about half the amount the recipe calls for, and add more as needed.
  • Adjust your meal times to what works best for you. Because we have kids, we had our first smoothie late morning, around 11 a.m. or noon, had our lunch at dinnertime, so we could eat with the kids (around 5 p.m.), and had our dinner smoothie around 9:30 p.m. This worked well for us and our crazy schedules, and made it easy to still eat dinner together as a family.
  • Don’t cheat. Just don’t. You got this!
  • Take before and after photos. It’s crazy to see the difference in just 21-days.
  • Do not weigh yourself. You don’t want to get fixated on a number. It’s all about how you feel. And as a bonus, your clothes might fit a little better once you’ve completed your cleanse.

Like I mentioned in my cleanse recap post, if you are able to do the real thing, do it. The support you receive, daily emails, and tips are incredibly valuable. 21-days is a long time, and you need all of the support you can get. I hope this was helpful and let me know if you have any questions! xxJ


  • Rachel

    Just wanted to say thank you for putting this up!

  • Ella

    Thank you for providing the lists of can/can’t foods. I knew some of the “can’t” foods but found quite a few surprising. Not sure that I could ever do a cleanse/meal replacement program – I think you mentioned headaches? I suffer from migraines (at least 1 a week) so doing something like this to trigger those is not something I want – but to have a better idea of proper foods to eat or avoid for a healthier lifestyle is very helpful. I look forward to hearing about your meal preps.

  • Morgan

    Hi there,

    So helpful! Do you know why you’re supposed to take the probiotic/enzyme? Have you continued to do this after the cleanse/how does it make you feel?

  • La Shell

    Definitely going to try this. I have a pesky 10 pounds I’d like to get rid of and just to be healthier overall. It looks very doable. Thanks!

  • Erica

    I wonder if this is possible on a vegan diet?

  • wendy

    what a great post! Thank you for sharing and really looking forward for your tips on Meal-prep. :)

  • Jessy L.

    SO looking forward to the meal prep routine post!

  • DtisljDuh – #utututyyyyyyyy777777

  • Elena

    Do you know if it’s safe to do while breastfeeding? Wondering if the supplements are safe as well.
    Thanks so much!

    • James Kicinski-McCoy

      I think every one has an opinion and that people need to make decisions for themselves. I do not think an elimination diet or cleanse is an eating disorder.

  • Diego Lopes

    The tips are quite valid, but I’m not a fan of replacing meals with smoothies.. But I heard bout a 3-day cleanse that all meals are smoothies for 3 days, so between that and this 21-day you shared, I definitely prefer yours.

  • Lauren Scotti

    Hi! Thanks so much for sharing your experience. I’m really considering doing the cleanse but it is a bit expensive. Did you just purchase your own supplements (listed above) and just buy the powder from the clean program to make it a bit cheaper?

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